Well I’m pleased to tell you that Carol [Emma Mae Franklin] and I have kicked Book 2 off in fine style. It promises to ‘whup’ Book 1 out of the ball-park.
Forthright is still being a cantankerous old git, Henri sows his wild oats (again and again) and the city of Arinthol is seething with intrigue and deceit as the inhabitants attempt to rebuild after the attack of the Bishop’s Char. Armitage, seriously injured is fiercely protected by Envy and who knows how that strange conjunction of lives will spin out? (Even we don’t yet.)
Just to tickle your taste buds… taste buds? — Here is another little snippet from Book 1
– The Use of Magic is Forbidden –
Her cry for vengeance was against him who had beaten her, expelled her, and thrown her and her unborn child from her home, her sanctuary. Somehow he had discovered her misdemeanor; how this had been accomplished she could not tell. It was no accident, not a chance thought, nor an idea that had come to him in a dream, she was sure of that. Someone had told him, someone or something had then angered him beyond belief. She knew in her heart that it was he who had unleashed the hunters, he who had paid blood money that they might return her, in chains to him.
It was like a pulse, her cry for vengeance; a pulse whose rhythm grew, deadening grief and terror, beating strength back into her. It was like a bitter spring welling up around her soul. When its dark waters had risen far enough they would touch her lips and she would drink of them… and then knowledge would come to her… she would know who had planned this evil thing, and why. But she must have time – time to drink of the waters of repair – time to learn and avenge. She must live… for vengeance…
‘Vengeance is mine, saith the Lady!’
It was as though a voice whispered the old text in her ear. She struck her breast with clenched hands; looking with eyes grown hard and tearless up at the tranquil sky; she answered the voice: “A lie! Like all the lies I have been taught – You! — I am through with You! – Vengeance! Vengeance! Whoever gives me redress shall have my worship!”
The voices and the feet were nearer. Strange, how slowly, how reluctantly they advanced. It was as though they were afraid. She studied the woods beyond the trees. Impenetrable, or if not it may be to difficult for her to gain ingress. They would soon discover her if she attempted to hide anywhere close. She must go on. At the end of the path might be some hiding place… perhaps sanctuary…
Listening to them approach she was sure the Chin feared the forest… they came slowly, haltingly… arguing, protesting…
She could see another sharp turn at the top of the steep section before her. If she could reach it before they caught sight of her, it might be that they would follow no further. She turned to climb the slope…
A wolf stood a dozen feet ahead, watching her, barring her way. A female wolf… It’s coat silken grey and white. It had a curiously broad head and slanted green eyes. On its forehead a mark, silver white and shaped like a flame.
The wolf was lithe and graceful, like a dainty woman Carla thought. A mad idea came, born of her despair and her denial of that Deity whom she had been taught from childhood to worship as all-good, all-wise, all-powerful. She thrust her hands out to the wolf. She cried to it: “Sister – you are a woman! Lead me to safety that I may have vengeance – Sister help me!”
Excerpt from The Un-Named – Book 1- Forthright and Clement
I remember as though it were yesterday –
Pacing the marble floor,
Back and forth incessantly
Listening, hoping, – waiting impatiently –
Each time the door opened
I swung towards the sound.
Aching to hear my summons,
Burning for that first glimpse of you
Hours dragged past,
Interminably slow –
Hours that marked their passage by the burgeoning contents of an ashtray
Set in the middle of a wide table.
When the prim and proper uniform called my name
It didn’t register;
I had waited so long –
Others waiting with me –
Waiting for their call, a summons of their own
Looked at me quizzically,
My name again, I started – shocked –
I followed through the door, there lay my love
Hot, drained, exhausted – full of bubbling excitement
I kissed her and took her hand, she squeezed – encouragement – love
She looked towards you, an introduction; a gift
Everything so white – so clean – so polished.
Clumsy, inexperienced, I lifted you from where you lay
Helpless, wrinkled, tiny, beautiful – so beautiful
You opened your eyes;
I gazed deep into the tiny depths of your soul –
What did you see?
Did you see me?
Did you know me?
Did you feel that first aching rush of love that flowed from out my heart?
Did you hear that burning screaming in my mind, that joy, that happiness?
From the dark chrysalis of the womb crawled a butterfly –
My beautiful baby girl,
Karen, My first born
The Tirnano (Books 1 & 2) FINN and KIEREEM
Some readers skip happily across the poor little Prologue, but sometimes it can give a great clue to the delights which are hidden deep within the pages: The Tirnano is a mix of the two first books of the Tirnano series. I have however shuffled the content slightly, to give what I feel is a smoother transition between the scenes and chapters. Much remains the same as Books 1 and 2, Book 3 (The Purple Queen) however picks up where the compilation leaves off:
Seek the Babe with Brother One
Honour the Brother with his Blade of Souls
Worship the Mother with her Shield of Stars
Remember the Knight with Demons Dead
Respect them all – for all are One
The Temple of Dilkadek.
A millennium had passed since the Ennead of Heliopolis had last walked together in the same room, they laid aside their differences to speak face to face.
“Why have you called me to this fly-blown, disease infested place, sister-wife?” demanded Seth.
He stood where he had manifested, behind the black basalt cathedrae, his shadow thrown onto the wall beside them. His brother and two sisters rose from their thrones to face his flickering, grotesque silhouette.
“We have grave news, brother-husband,” replied Nephthys, extending her wings in a gesture of homage.
The Lord of Chaos strode from behind the dais, “Then speak!” he said, his voice, issuing from the outlandish mouth and throat boomed with an echoing quality, two voices blended ineptly into one. “I weary already of this place.”
“Is that the only greeting you have for your siblings after all this time?” asked Isis in her soft sibilant way, she moved towards him in a sinuous manner.
Seth threw up his right arm in a warding gesture, “Keep away from me sister; I need not your vile magic contaminating me.” He turned to Osiris his voice dripping disgust, “Have you no respect for your image brother, why have you not as yet improved your appearance, that filthy, ugly green face? It does you little favour.”
“At least my brother-husband can be recognised, what is that ridiculous visage you refuse to give up?” asked Isis.
“Enough,” cut in Nephthys, “we are not here to indulge in petty bickering.”
“Well sister, what are we here for?” hissed Isis.
“I have divined that the Light is contriving to bring outlandish warriors from the deepest ends of space and time to stand against you. Worse still, the Anakim have found no way to break through the crafted barriers shaped by that interfering aberration Bes.”
“Stamp him out!” Boomed Seth.
“Ra and his kin have thrown in with that fat dwarf, there is no way that alone will you be able to stand against them. You have need of us, your dear brother and sisters, for together we can augment the Anakim’s ability to break the barriers. Together we can bring your plan for this disgusting world to completion.”
Nephthys looked at the three gods who stood before her. “Are you prepared to join me to bring to fruition my brother-husband’s plan to create a paradise more splendid than that from which we were deported so inconveniently?”
“Has the Light yet activated seeding?” Osiris spoke for the first time, the three spun towards him; the sound of his voice had not been heard for many thousands of years. It was a low croak, such as might have emanated from the throat of a great bullfrog; it carried latent horror. An intimate understanding of death curdled and crawled within it.
“So it speaks,” said Seth.
“I but posed a question brother,” continued Osiris, his grotesque green head spun, his yellow eyes gazed malevolently at the magnificent figure of the Chaos Lord.
“It has, – the final creatures have been planted by the Ogdoad throughout the land masses.” It was Nephthys who answered.
“What forms have they?” Seth interjected.
“That of their creator… Atum is as ever nothing but vain about his appearance.”
“It matters not, they will one day provide our progeny with much sustenance,” hissed her sister.